Liberty To Go To See


 
Liberty To Go To See is a dramatic event that takes place in Cliveden, site of the Chew Family ancestral home in Germantown, Philadelphia. The title comes from a letter written by an enslaved worker, Joseph, to his owner, Benjamin Chew, requesting permission to go to another plantation to be near his wife. The Philadelphia Young Playwrights, drawing from the thousands of documents in the Chew Family papers, worked with Cliveden staff, historians, and community stakeholders to workshop and preview the initial dramatic creation in 2013. This half hour show follows narrator James Smith, a freed African servant, through a series of episodes of daily life and work of the Chew family and their indentured, enslaved, and immigrant workers. The story dramatizes the paradoxes in American history as revealed in the class inequalities, gender roles, racial discrimination and, ultimately, the struggle for freedom.